New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) nurses at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist Hospital are celebrating the ratification of a new contract after an intense fight against proposed cuts to care, staffing and wage increases.
“This new contract is a win for nurses and our patients,” said NYP-Brooklyn Methodist nurse leader Christina Mazza. “The nurses came together and fought back against management’s regressive proposals, including staffing cuts. We even made safe staffing gains, which will help us deliver the quality care our community deserves.”
The new three-year contract includes wage increases of 7%, 6% and 5% with full retroactive pay. NYSNA members voted to ratify the new contract on June 7.
The previous contract for NYP-Brooklyn Methodist ended on April 30 and private-sector New York City NYSNA nurses contracts expired at the end of 2022 and early this year.
As administrators began looking at implementing staffing cuts, local nurses pushed back against the proposal, saying it threatened quality care for the Brooklyn community.
An informal picket was held on May 4, which rallied support from the community. Signs calling for the administration to listen to nurses were plastered throughout Park Slope.
Later in May, the nurses voted 99.6% in favor of authorizing a strike and delivered their notice to begin the strike on June 12 unless an agreement was reached.
A tentative agreement was then reached on June 1, alleviating the risk of a strike.
“It has been a long and challenging road to reach this agreement, but we’re excited to have a new contract that protects quality care for our community and delivers respectful salary increases on par with nurses at NewYork-Presbyterian's flagship hospital in Manhattan,” said NYP-Brooklyn Methodist nurse Diane Bonet. “This was truly a team effort. We could not have accomplished what we did without the full support of all the nurses.”
Last January, the NYSNA nurses at NewYork-Presbyterian’s flagship hospital in Manhattan reached a three-year contract agreement that increased nurse staffing, improved staffing standards and enforcement, preserved healthcare and other benefits, and increased salaries each year of the contract by 5%, 6% and 7%.
This settlement paved the way for similar agreements at other NYC hospitals. Nurses at Montefiore and Mount Sinai Hospital went on strike before reaching new contract agreements.
“Our nurses at NYP-Brooklyn Methodist are once again proving that when we fight, we win. It takes courage to stand up to your employer, even when you know that what you’re fighting for is right. I applaud these Brooklyn nurses who are ready to do whatever it takes to protect quality care for their community,” said NYSNA president Nancy Hagans.
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